Mark Cuban and former Oculus CEO back 3D e-commerce startup VNTANA – TechCrunch
As Facebook and Apple jump headlong into a more 3D future for the mainstream web with big plans for mixed reality headsets, most web content is still firmly in 2D. And while some are pushing for a completely separate “metaverse” where 3D content resides, it will likely be a hard sell for existing web platforms that want to invest resources where users are today.
VNTANA builds a content management system that helps e-commerce retailers showcase products on their sites in glorious 3D, while also allowing users to view items in augmented reality and try out items virtually. The startup, founded in 2012, has focused on 3D content for years, but shifted its focus from bringing holograms to live events before the pandemic to bringing 3D content to storefronts across the web.
“It was always about creating this interactive way for consumers to engage with their products in a meaningful way,” said CEO Ashley Crowder.
The startup told TechCrunch it has raised $ 12.5 million in Series A funding over multiple increases. Backers of the startup’s latest funding include Mark Cuban, former Oculus CEO Brendan Iribe, Flexport and Anorak Ventures, among others. The company announced a funding round of $ 6 million in 2019.
The startup’s software suite includes products that optimize large 3D files for faster load times so that consumers can see every angle of a new product while allowing e-commerce platforms to leverage the 3D files they have. ‘they already own to create 2D digitally rendered showroom images and videos, saving time and money on marketing. The company recently partnered with wholesale management platform Joor and software maker PTC to expand its reach.
Consumers can take advantage of the startup’s software to get an idea of an object’s size and how it actually looks in their physical space with augmented reality before making a purchase, which can result in fewer returned items. explains Crowder.
Despite a few major announcements from Apple, Google, and Facebook, developers’ opportunity for augmented reality was more limited than many investors in the space anticipated when the wave of interest started several years ago. Websites have been slow to embrace 3D content for itself, but players like VNTANA have found opportunities to deliver experiences using 3D content to address known issues for e-commerce retailers while preparing them for the future. AR / VR.